Outside of horse racing’s Triple Crown, the Breeders’ Cup may be the country’s most prestigious annual thoroughbred race series. It now includes a total purse of $28 million spread across 14 stakes races held over two days in the fall.
The Breeders’ Cup is run annually at a rotating list of the top thoroughbred tracks in North America, including Churchill Downs and Keeneland Race Course right here in Kentucky. The event’s signature race, the Breeders’ Cup Classic, also gives Triple Crown winners a shot at the Grand Slam of Thoroughbred Racing.
Here’s everything you need to know about betting on the Breeders’ Cup here in Kentucky, including the latest Breeders’ Cup odds and how to place your bets online at the best Kentucky horse betting sites.
2024 Breeders’ Cup odds
The 41st running of the Breeders’ Cup is scheduled for Nov. 1 and 2, 2024, at Del Mar in San Diego, California. It will be the third Breeders’ Cup at Del Mar since 2017.
Closer to the event, once all Breeders’ Cup race fields are set through Breeders’ Cup Challenge races and the major race points system, odds on every horse in every race will be revealed. You’ll find these odds right here.
How to bet the Breeders’ Cup online in Kentucky
Online horse race betting is legal in Kentucky. That means you can bet on Breeders’ Cup races using your phone, tablet or computer with apps and websites like TVG or FanDuel Racing.
You can download and install these apps on most mobile devices or access the betting sites using most mobile and computer browsers. After that, you’ll need to sign up for an account and deposit funds into that account.
Once that’s done, you can browse through the Breeders’ Cup race odds. When you find a horse you like, click on the win, place or show odds to create a bet slip. You must complete the bet slip by filling in an amount to bet and confirming the bet. Before that, you can:
- Add more individual bets
- Build exactas, trifectas and superfectas
- Box or wheel your bets
Your other options for betting on Breeders’ Cup races include betting with licensed Kentucky online sports betting sites once they launch. Check with each online sportsbook to see if it participates in the same pari-mutuel betting available at online horse race betting apps like TVG and Kentucky horse racing facilities. You may see shorter odds and specific caps on payouts if it does not.
Finally, you can bet in person on Breeders’ Cup races at any of Kentucky’s six horse race tracks. All of these Kentucky horse racing facilities offer simulcast racing and pari-mutuel wagering:
|Churchill Downs||700 Central Ave. Louisville, KY 40208|
|Keeneland Race Course||4201 Versailles Rd, Lexington, KY 40510|
|Turfway Park||7500 Turfway Rd, Florence, KY 41042|
|Kentucky Downs||5629 Nashville Rd, Franklin, KY 42134|
|Ellis Park||3300 US Hwy 41 N, Henderson, KY 42420|
|The Red Mile (harness racing)||1200 Red Mile Rd, Lexington, KY 40504|
Best bets for Breeders’ Cup
Betting on Breeders’ Cup races is like betting on any horse race. To begin with, you can pick any horse in any Breeders’ Cup race field to win, place or show. However, you can also bet on combinations of horses and the order they’ll finish, allowing you to turn even a small bet into a big payday. Here’s a more detailed look at each type of wager available for Breeders’ Cup betting.
- Win: Bet on a horse to win. Bet based on the morning line odds, but get paid at the odds as set once all bets are in if your pick wins. Flightline won the 2022 Breeders’ Cup Classic and paid $2.88. The horse was a 3-5 morning line favorite.
- Place: Bet on a horse to win or finish second. Bet based on the morning line odds, but get paid at the lower “place” odds as set once all bets are in as long as your pick wins or finishes second. Olympiad was a 10-1 morning line longshot in the 2022 Breeders’ Cup Classic but finished second. Place bets paid $12.38.
- Show: Bet on a horse to win, finish second or come third. Bet based on the morning line odds, but get paid at the even lower “show” odds as set once all bets are in as long as your pick wins or finishes second or third. Taiba was at 8-1 on the morning line in the 2022 Breeders’ Cup Classic but finished third. Show bets paid $4.00.
- Exacta: Bet on a pair of horses to finish first and second in exact order. Wins pay big odds because of the difficulty of picking the top two finishers in exact order. Exactas can be boxed, giving you an additional bet by flipping the finishing order of your two horses. The $1 exacta paid $17.87 in the 2022 Breeders’ Cup Classic.
- Trifecta: Bet on three horses to finish first, second, and third in exact order. Wins pay even bigger odds because of the difficulty of picking the top three finishers in exact order. Trifectas can be boxed, giving you multiple additional bets covering the different finishing orders for your horses. The $1 trifecta paid $41.63 in the 2022 Breeders’ Cup Classic.
- Superfecta: Bet on four horses to finish first, second, third, and fourth in exact order. Wins pay enormous odds because of the extreme difficulty of picking the top four finishers in exact order. Superfectas can be boxed, giving you multiple additional bets covering the different finishing orders for your horses, but that many combinations make for an expensive bet. The $1 superfecta paid $69.16 in the 2022 Breeders’ Cup Classic.
- Wheeling: All exacta, trifecta, and superfecta bets can be wheeled. Wheeling involves fixing, or “keying,” the finishing position of one horse and placing multiple additional bets on combinations involving different horses in the other finishing positions.
Breeders’ Cup qualifying
The Breeders’ Cup hosts a series of Breeders’ Cup Challenge races throughout the horse racing season, giving the winners a spot in the field at certain Breeders’ Cup races. Breeders’ Cup Challenge races are held from December through August at tracks worldwide. Breeders’ Cup Challenge venues include:
- Churchill Downs
- San Isidro Racecourse
- Tokyo Racecourse
- Hanshin Racecourse
- Santa Anita
- Monmouth Park
- Goodwood Racecourse
- Del Mar
- France Galop
- York Racecourse
Horses can also qualify for Breeders’ Cup races through a points system involving significant races throughout the season.
Great moments in Breeders’ Cup history
Here’s a list of some of the great moments in Breeders’ Cup history:
- 1984: 31 to 1 longshot Wild Again won the inaugural Breeders’ Cup Classic.
- 2000/2001: Tiznow won back-to-back Breeders’ Cup Classics.
- 2008/2009/2010: Goldikova won back-to-back-to-back Breeders’ Cup Miles.
- 2015: American Pharoah became the first-ever Grand Slam of Thoroughbred Racing winner after winning the Triple Crown and the Breeders’ Cup Classic.
- 2012/2013/2016: Beholder won the Juvenile Fillies in 2012, the Distaff in 2013, and the Distaff again in 2016, becoming the second three-time Breeders’ Cup race winner in history.
Breeders’ Cup Classic records
Ghostzapper holds the record for the fastest Breeders’ Cup Classic after running a 1:59:02 at Lone Star Park in 2004.
American Pharoah holds the record for the biggest winning margin in the Breeders’ Cup Classic after winning by 6.5 lengths in 2015. The horse’s time of 2:00.07 also set a track record at Keeneland that year.
Breeders’ Cup FAQ
When is the 2024 Breeders’ Cup?
The 41st Breeders’ Cup is scheduled for Nov. 1 and 2 at Del Mar in San Diego, California.
How much does the Breeders’ Cup Classic winner earn?
The Breeders’ Cup Classic has a massive $6 million purse. The winner earns $3.3 million. The top eight get paid according to the following breakdown:
- 1st: $3,300,000
- 2nd: $1,020,000
- 3rd: $540,000
- 4th: $300,000
- 5th: $180,000
- 6th-8th: $60,000
How many horses are in the Breeders’ Cup Classic field?
The field is limited to 14 horses at the Breeders’ Cup Classic. Up to eight horses earn spots in the field through Breeders’ Cup Challenge races and point system qualifying. A panel of thoroughbred racing experts chooses the rest.
Who holds the record for the fastest time in the Breeders’ Cup Classic?
Ghostzapper holds the record for the fastest Breeders’ Cup Classic time. He ran a 1:59:02 at Lone Star Park back in 2004.